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Rugged COM Express Mini module runs Linux on Bay Trail

Nov 29, 2013 — by Eric Brown 1,526 views

Kontron announced a tiny, COM Express Mini Type 10 computer-on-module fitted with a choice of five Intel Atom and Celeron Bay Trail SoCs. The 84 x 55mm COMe-mBT10 module offers up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM and up to 64GB flash, supports I/O interfaces including gigabit Ethernet, dual SATA, USB 3.0 and up to eight USB 2.0, plus dual DisplayPort and LVDS displays, and is available in a model rated for -40 to 85°C operation.

When Intel unveiled its Intel Atom E3800 (“Bay Trail-I”) SoCs in early October, Kontron was one of several embedded manufacturers that vowed support. The German embedded giant promised upcoming SMARC, COM Express Mini, and COM Express Compact modules based on the E3800, as well as Pico-ITX, Mini-ITX, and 3U CPCI single board computers. The COM Express Mini Type 10 COMe-mBT10 appears to be the first product out of the gate. The COMs are designed for applications including industrial tablets and handheld PCs, stationary HMIs and controllers, and in-vehicle systems. Other potential targets include embedded signage, point of sale, medical, and gaming devices, says Kontron.

Kontron COMe-mBT10
(click image to enlarge)

According to Kontron, the Atom E3800 SoCs offer “double the performance,” “significantly improved performance-per-watt ratios,” and “three times higher graphics performance” of earlier Atom processors. It’s unclear whether this is compared to earlier Intel Atom D2550 “Cedar Trail” Atoms or N2800 (“Cedar View”) models, or another Atom. The new SoCs are also touted for their long-term availability and industrial temperature range, both of which are supported on the new Kontron modules.

The supported Atom E3800 SoCs include a quad-core, 1.91GHz Atom E3845 that runs at 10 Watts, as well as three dual-core models ranging from 1.33GHz to 1.75GHz and 6W to 8W TDP. There’s also a single-core E3815 model with 1.46GHz performance and a 5W TDP. The two, related new Celeron Bay Trail M/D processors — the quad-core Celeron J1900 (2.0GHz.10W) and N2920 (1.86GHz 7.5W) — are also available (see spec sheet farther below).


The Kontron COMe-mBT10 module supports up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM, as well as flash options that range from 2GB to 64GB. The COM supports two independent displays via the DisplayPort++ (DP/HDMI/DVI) and single-channel LVDS (18/24bit) interfaces. A gigabit Ethernet controller is also available.

COMe-mBT10 block diagram
(click image to enlarge)


Additional I/O expressed via the COM Express Type 10 connectors include a USB 3.0 port and eight USB 2.0 ports. Dual SATA 3Gbps connections are available, along with three Gen 2 PCI-Express x1 lanes, dual serial ports, and other I/O ranging from SPI to SDIO.

The COMe-mBT10 supports Linux, as well as a variety of Windows versions and VxWorks. Kontron also provides software and customization services.

Specifications listed for the Kontron COMe-mBT10 include:

  • Processor — Intel Atom E3800 (Bay Trail-I) or Celeron Bay Trail M/D, with HD Graphics Gen 7 (MPEG2, H.264, DirectX11, OCL 1.2, OGL 3.0, WMV9, and VC1):
    • Atom E3845 (4x 1.91GHz, 10W TDP)
    • Atom E3827 (2x 1.75GHz, 8W)
    • Atom E3826 (2x 1.46GHz, 7W)
    • Atom E3825 (2x 1.33GHz, 6W)
    • Atom E3815 (1x 1.46GHz, 5W)
    • Celeron J1900 (4x 2.00GHz, 10W)
    • Celeron N2920 (4x 1.86GHz, 7.5W)
  • RAM — up to 8GB LPDDR3-1066/1333 (ECC optional)
  • Flash — optional eMMC Flash (2-32GB SLC or 4-64GB MLC)
  • Networking — gigabit Ethernet controller (Intel I210IT/I211AT)
  • Other I/O:
    • USB 3.0
    • Up to 8x USB 2.0
    • 2x SATA 3Gbps
    • DisplayPort++ (DP/HDMI/DVI) up to 2560 x 1600 @ 60Hz
    • Single-channel, 18/24bit LVDS with DP-to-LVDS up to 1920×1200 (optional eDP)
    • 3x PCIe x1 Gen 2.0 (optional 4x PCIe x1 without LAN)
    • 2x serial (RX/TX)
    • Fast I2C
    • SPI
    • LPC
    • SMB
    • SDIO 3.0 (shared with GPIO, COMe-mBTi10 only)
    • Intel HD audio
  • Other features — ACPI 3.0; dual-stage watchdog; RTC; POSCAP capacitors; PICMG EAPI / KEAPI3 support; optional TPM 1.2
  • Power — 4.75-20V power supply; S5 Eco and MARS Smart Battery support
  • Operating temperature — 0 to 60°C (commercial) or -40 to 85°C (industrial)
  • Dimensions — 84 x 55mm (COM Express Mini, Type 10)
  • Operating system — Linux, VxWorks, Windows 7/8, WES7, WEC7

Further information

First-off product samples of the Kontron COMe-mBT10 COM Express Mini modules will be available in January 2014. More information may be found at the company’s Kontron COMe-mBT10 product page.

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